Brooke’s Dive into Spanish Archaeology
09/25/2007 – 11/01/2007
During this time, I traveled to Menorca, Spain to work for a month on an archaeological dig. We lived in Ciutadella. On the way there, I spent about 6 days in Barcelona traveling solo.
Central America Spanish Study Extravaganza
12/27/2007 – 2/20/2008
This jaunt to Central America was my first trip abroad that was not Europe based. I spent a good chunk of time in Guatemala studying Spanish in both San Pedro and Quetzaltenango with trips to neighboring areas of Antigua, Panajachel, San Juan, Chichicastenango, San Andres, Flores, Tikal, Rio Dulce, Finca Paraiso, Quirigua, Chiquimula and Guatemala City. I ventured into southern Mexico to Tapachula, Puerto Escondido, San Cristobal de las Casas and Palenque. Another stop was made in Copan Ruinas in Honduras.
Brooke’s Attempt at Learning Russian
3/16/2008 – 3/1/2009
This year of my life had the primary focus of learning Russian and traveling through some former Soviet Republics. To start things off, I spent 2 weeks in Poland (Warsaw, Lublin, Krakow, Wroclaw) and a week in Kiev, Ukraine before flying into Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. I spent a couple of months in Bishkek before venturing to Almaty, Kazakhstan for 2 weeks. Upon return to Bishkek, I continued my Russian studies before heading back to the USA for a month in August, 2008. I applied for jobs teaching English during that time, but with nothing definite, I headed back to Central Asia as I would stick around there to study for languages if nothing came through.
I finally heard about a job teaching English in Kiev, Ukraine. I had about 6 weeks to kill before the start date (end of October, 2008), so I headed to the Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania) where I eventually met Patrick. We parted ways as I had to start my teaching job. It was about 5 months in Kiev (side trip to Budapest) before I decided to make the move to Australia.
Brooke’s Walkabout Down Under
03/02/2009 – 05/2011
This period of time was mainly about being in Australia. I did a sponsored work visa (through BUNAC) for 4 months, and then a work and holiday visa for 12 months. I had 2 separate trips to New Zealand in order to get new visas for Australia during this time — first trip to North Island, and second trip to Christchurch in South Island. Pat and I eventually applied for the partner visa, which took nearly a year to get approved.
Brooke’s Visit to the Mother Land
05/2011 – 06/2011
In May, I went with Patrick’s family to Malaysia to travel and visit his dad’s roots. It was a 2 week adventure, and we even met up with a good friend for a few days in Penang. We returned to Australia for a week before heading off on a 3 week adventure to America, where I hadn’t been in 3 long years. We traveled to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Peoria and Las Vegas.
Brooke’s Russian Refresher
10/26/2011 – 11/29/2011
I was able to score an awesome flight deal using double miles and ventured back to Central Asia in business class. On the way there, I stopped off for 4 days in Istanbul. For four weeks, I took Russian language lessons in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, and on the way home, I had a 1.5 day stop in Bangkok.
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